Ahhh.. the kitchen. It’s where I spend most of my time
cooking eating. I love to cook, but I’m not one of those cute girls who wears an apron and makes cooking look easy. If I’m cooking, it’s a super messy situation. I have multiple pots and pans on the stove, pieces of asparagus on the floor that I dropped off the cutting board, and olive oil splattering on the back of the stove while I’m cooking. I like to think it makes the food taste better, but it probably doesn’t.
As a result, my kitchen has to be clean because it gets SO dirty during the process.
The kitchen is where we prepare everything we are about to put into our bodies.
Seriously.. think about what we do when we’re in the kitchen. First, we clean it with whatever “product.” We lay our food, silverware, and cooking utensils on those same counters we just wiped with Clorox bleach-filled wipes 10 minutes ago. We give our kids their dropped utensils after they touch the floor that we just used toxic cleaning solution on. We clean our oven with toxic “oven cleaner” that releases fumes as our food is literally in that same place. We wipe down our refrigerator and microwave with toxic chemicals and then put our fruits and veggies in it right after. Hmmm….
And then we have that cabinet under our sinks with all the cleaning products that has the child-lock on it in case our children (or pets) get into it? Yeah, we used to have that in our house too. But the amazing thing is that now that our cleaning products are made from plants, we don’t have to worry about that stuff. And guess what.. if a child “consume” the product we use, the warning label just says to “drink lots of water,” not “call poison control.” Pretty cool, right?
I talked about how important it is to check your cleaning products on apps like Think Dirty or EWG’S database in my first post of the series here which you can check out if you haven’t already!
But, we need to keep away those germs and keep the kitchen clean. So, here’s how I clean my kitchen using all natural, toxin-free products.
- Countertops, Sink, Kitchen table, pretty much every surface:
I use Thieves Cleaner. I’m not kidding when I say I use this cleaner for everything. It’s made from a bunch of natural germ-fighting oils like cinnamon, clove, lemon, rosemary, and eucalyptus. For kitchen use, I dilute 1-2 capfuls of the cleaning solution into a 16 oz glass spray bottle, fill the rest with water, and add a drop or 2 of lemon or citrus fresh essential oil. It seriously keeps germs away. If you don’t believe me, I’ll send you my “moldy bread” experiment pictures… trust me, it works and it smells really good and lasts forever (I got mine back in March and still have over half of the bottle left!). As you’ll see below, it can literally be used for SO many things.
- Kitchen Floors
I use this mop wet-jet type thing (pictured above) I got from Bed, Bath, and Beyond. I love it because you can fill it with whatever solution you like instead of toxic pre-made stuff. I fill mine with Thieves cleaner and water and use it on my kitchen floors (well, all my floors actually).
- Dish Soap
I use Thieves Dish Soap from Young Living. Dish soap can be so toxic and it didn’t make sense that I would be “washing” my dishes with toxic ingredients and then eating off of it. I actually dilute this soap into smaller pump bottles which makes it last so much longer. If you ever have a super greasy or dirty pan, you can also add a drop or two of lemon essential oil and it comes right out. Bam. Problem solved.
- Hand Soap
I make my own hand soap that you can find on this post. I keep one at the kitchen sink!
- Dishwasher Detergent
Another super toxic household product. I use Seventh Generation’s Dishwasher Detergent packs!
- Stove-top Cleaner
(via DIY Network)
This is what I use to clean our glass stove top about every 2 weeks (depending on how messy I was that week). It’s super easy, natural, and effective! Basically wipe down glass stove-top with vinegar, pour baking soda all over it, soak a towel in warm water and lay completely over the stove-top. Let the damp towel sit there for 10-15 minutes and then scrub with a damp towel. Wash off all the residue and I finish it off by giving it one more spray with my Thieves spray bottle.
- Oven Cleaner
Here’s a natural oven cleaner I found here.
- Refrigerator Shelves/Microwave
I use my Thieves cleaning spray bottle for the inside of my refrigerator and microwave!
- Heavy Duty Sink Cleaner
I disinfect and wipe down my sink every morning and night, but every week or so, I “deep clean” my stainless steel sink using this concoction. Sprinkle baking soda all over your sink (make sure it’s down the drain and around the sink too). Pour vinegar in the sink and if you have a sink plug, put it in. The baking soda and vinegar will start to fizz. I get a sponge or towel and rub it all around together like a paste. Let it sit for 15-20 minutes then rinse with warm soapy water. Dry sink and I like to put a dab of olive oil on a paper towel and buff up the sink to make it shiny.
- Garbage Disposal Cleaner
Smelly garbage disposals are the WORST. Luckily, there’s an easy and effective way to clean them naturally from this website: “Sprinkle half cup baking soda down the drain then add 1 cup vinegar down the drain (it will start to bubble up). If you have a sink stopper, I put it down and let it sit like that for 5ish minutes. Then, I pour boiling hot water down the drain. Then, I pour ice cubes down the drain and turn on the disposal. Finally, I throw in some chunks of lemon and run the disposal. Smells super clean and fresh!
- Coffee Cleaner
This is technically part of the kitchen, so I felt like it needed to be included. I try to clean my coffee maker every 1-2 weeks to avoid gross buildup inside. Here’s a simple way to do it: Clean out the pot and all the removable parts with soap and water. Pretend like you’re going to make a cup of coffee, but add half water and half vinegar to the reservoir. Brew the mixture about halfway through, turn the coffee maker off, and let it sit for 30 minutes. Finish brewing the rest of the mixture into the pot. Pour out and rinse out the coffee pot and removable parts again (because they will smell like vinegar). I repeat the same cycle again but this time, I only add water (no vinegar) to let it clean out the vinegar smell again. And you’re done! More detailed instructions here.
So that’s how I clean my kitchen! Hopefully that was helpful to all of you! I’d love to hear your favorite toxin-free ways to keep your kitchen clean!